Why you should set goals
Planning for your future or just wanting to get the most out of your year? Gain long-term vision and short-term motivation by setting some goals.
Whether you’re thinking about subject selection, wondering which post school pathway to take, pondering your gap year options, choosing your next holiday destination, or thinking about how to get fitter and healthier – you’re already forming goals.
Goals don’t always have to be hugely monumental and life changing events either, so here’s some reasons why you should consider putting a little bit of time and energy into turning your dreams and plans into goals.
Goals can provide focus and help you to move forward in life
Spending some time thinking about what you’d like to achieve in the future (either in a year, five years, or even ten years) can help you work out what’s really important to you. This clarity can help you to focus on what really matters to you. If you care about something, you’re more likely to stick with it and get a great reward when you follow through.
Writing down your goals and putting an action plan in place are the next steps that could help you to achieve what you set out to do.
Goals help you to see and measure your progress
No matter how big, challenging, or daunting your aspirations are, goals could help you to break them down into manageable steps and plan ways to work around obstacles or make time.
This will help you to chip away at the ultimate goal (as well as feel good along the way when you accomplish your milestones).
Setting goals could help you to overcome procrastination
“Never put off till tomorrow what you can do today.” – Benjamin Franklin.
Putting things off is so easy to do, but it means that you’ll probably end up achieving less.
By setting goals you’ll become accountable to yourself. Instead of brushing something off and thinking “I’ll get around to it tomorrow”, your goals will stick in your mind. If you don’t complete an action or step, it might niggle away at you. That works as a constant reminder of what you should be doing, and prompt you into action.
Don’t scare yourself off though. Setting one huge goal can be daunting, but breaking it down into smaller steps can make it more manageable.
When you’ve discovered goals that are important to you, planned how you can achieve them and set yourself deadlines that will hold you accountable, statistically there is a much higher chance that you will be more motivated than ever to see your goals through to the end.
You could achieve more than you might have done without them.
Productivity and positivity
The last couple of years have been a bit crazy and lots of us had plans changed or written off – sometimes more than once. So it’s understandable that you might be feeling hesitant to start making goals this year.
However, lots of experts reckon that this could be the best year ever to set some goals. They could help to keep you productive and preserve your sanity by making you feel a bit more in control. Surely it’s got to be worth a go?
You can set goals anytime
Despite the unknowns of the future, setting goals still has great value – so try not to get sucked into the “why bother” attitude and instead opt for making the best out of what you’ve got to work with.
If you haven’t set any goals yet, don’t stress, it’s never too late and there’s no perfect time or deadline. You could take some time to think about what you’d like to achieve right now, or book it in for this weekend. Then you can get stuck in and start taking action once you have organised your direction.
Make sure your goals are:
- Realistic and achievable
- Will add value or happiness to your life
- Flexible – it’s OK to change your goals or milestones if they’re not working out for you.
More about goal setting